I've had a very frustrating few weeks running lately. For starters, it's nearly 80 degrees at 5 a.m. And the humidity has been on par with the deep South. That makes it tough to breathe, and it really saps what little stamina I have. The worst thing, though, has been the saga of the shoes. I put 500+ miles on my shoes, and switched to a new pair. A really cool pair. However, the support in the new shoes was just enough different that running in them led to shin splints. Trying to squeeze a few more weeks out of my old shoes made them worse. So… Of course, all this has an application, (or two).
A bad solution can be worse than the problem – I chose what I thought were good, quality running shoes, and they were. They were just wrong for me. Had I done more research, been better informed, depended on someone more knowledgeable than I was, I would have been saved some pain, and several days of missed running. We face all sorts of challenges as we run the race God sets before us. Depending on our own knowledge and opinions can make our situation worse. However, if we do some (Scriptural) research, talk to more experienced runners (mature believers) consult with the expert (the Holy Spirit), we can hit on a solution that benefits us rather than costing us time and causing more pain.
The right support matters – The new shoes felt great when I tried them on in the store, and during the days I walked in them. But, when I ran, my cool new shoes had no support construction to stop my ankle from rolling when my foot hit. That forced my calf muscles to try and hold my foot in place and that job was way too big for them. Sometimes, we need cushiony "poor baby" kind of support when we're having hard times. Other times, we need firmer "stability control" support to keep us on course when we feel like giving up, or when the job gets too big. It helps to know ourselves, the issues we have trouble with, and the support available. (My husband is stability control, but I have friends who are more cushiony.)
Now that I've identified the problem, and determined what support I need, after a few more days rest, I'll be back in the race!
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. (Hebrews 12:1-2, NLT)
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